Coconut oil coffee : Miracle drink or just plain nutty?

This week, we’re getting our coffee taste buds tingling with a spot of coconut coffee. We’re not talking coffee with a dash of coconut flavoured syrup, we’re talking coffee and coconut oil. This combination has been all over social media, with converts stating it boosts your metabolism and improves your immune system. Now we’re not too sure of the scientific evidence for these statements, but we do like a bit of coconut, and you know we like our coffee, so we decided to give it a try.

The ingredients

Our life source being made

 

Making this beverage was easy-peasy. All you need is a standard cup of black coffee, a tub of coconut oil, and a spoon. Unsure of which coconut oil to plump for? If you enjoy the taste of coconut, reach for an extra virgin oil for a stronger coconut flavour and aroma. If you’re less keen, select a refined coconut oil for a more neutral scent and taste.
Once you’ve made your cup of coffee (best to go for an americano or black filter coffee, adding milk will only confuse the flavours), dig out a spoonful of coconut oil. Coconut oil can be fairly hard if cool, so if you’re struggling to extract it, simply warm up your tea spoon. Stir your oil into the coffee until it is

Add one teaspoon of coconut oil

dissolved. The coconut adds flavour to your coffee, but it doesn’t add sweetness, so if you use sweeteners or sugar, add as usual. We added our usual teaspoon of agave syrup.

 

So, this is what our beverage looked like. There is some oil separation, but at first glance, it looks no different to your usual cup of joe. What was different, however, was the smell. This drink gives off a gorgeous aroma of, believe it or not, coffee and coconut.

 

The results

The separation was not attractive

Cut to ten minutes later, given time to cool, the oil and liquid had begun to separate and looked, I’m sure you’ll agree, not overly appetising. Not to be deterred (it still smelt amazing), we gave it a stir, and dug in.

We weren’t quite sure what to make of the taste. It tasted very strongly of coconut, but this supported the usual coffee taste. We usually knock our coffee back in one go, but sipping on this beverage took time as it was much richer than we’re used to. Despite our continual stirring, once the water was merely warm as opposed to hot, the liquid and oil remained separated. This did not make our beverage particularly visually appealing. We’ve since learned that ‘experts’ recommend popping your oily coffee through a blender for a more thorough mixing process.
Our coffee in more attractive times

 

Perhaps the oddest thing about drinking this concoction, was the texture. It was somewhere in between cream and hot chocolate, which was slightly disconcerting. Once we’d finished drinking, we had a lot of coconut oil left on our lips, not that we’re complaining, as this makes a fantastic lip balm!

 

 

The purported benefits

 

We’ve trawled a lot of healthy eating blogs so you don’t have to. There’s a lot of talk about the health benefits of this drink, and so called ‘bulletproof’ coffee, but today we’re going to stick to the facts. There haven’t been studies into the mix of coconut oil and coffee, but the benefits of coconut oil have been fairly well established.

 

The white stuff
Coconut oil is almost 90% saturated fat, which at first read sounds terrifying! But, believe it or not, this is a good thing. You see, the fats coconut oil is made up of are Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCT), or medium chain fatty acids for the less scientific amongst us. These MCT’s require less breaking down, and therefore are transported directly into our blood stream for immediate use as fuel, meaning we don’t store the fat from the coconut oil on our bodies (or love handles!). Indeed, a study by Assunção et al. (2009), found that a regular coconut supplement promotes a reduction in abdominal obesity and waist circumference, it’s really important to state that this effect only occurs when combined with exercise. There’s a lot of talk of ‘super foods’ or ‘miracle products’, these do not exist. Coconut oil is a great addition to a healthy diet, but it won’t replace one.

 

To conclude

 

We enjoyed our nutty coffee, but we certainly couldn’t drink this on a regular basis. It’s logistically tricky, and we got coconut oil EVERYWHERE (how it ended up in our hair, we will never know). Whilst we may be adding the white stuff to our cooking, our daily brew has enough flavour on it’s own.